March 8, 2005

The Big Dog to have further surgery

Bill Clinton is to have low-risk surgery to repair scar tissue and fluid that has built up since his heart surgery last year. The Reuters story (by Larry Fine... wasn't he in the Three Stooges?) reports it's expected that he'll spend 10 days in the hospital and make a full recovery.


At 3/08/2005 2:10 PM, Anonymous Porter McNeil said...

He is the "Big Dog" in my political world.

He taught our party and our country how to serve eight years in the White House, generate 22 million new jobs, balance the budget, turn back a surplus, reduce crime by putting more police on the streets and lead an effective foreign policy. He showed Democrats that with a message of opportunity and responsibility, we can win in both the red and blue states.

Our family sends heartfelt wishes for a speedy recovery to President Bill Clinton.

At 3/08/2005 8:39 PM, Blogger Dissenter said...

I concur in part, and I dissent in part.

President Clinton accomplished extraordinary advances in domestic policy, most of which have been obliterated by the Bush administration. He balanced a horribly unbalanced budget, and he eliminated a tenacious deficit created by his Republican predecessors. A brilliant orator, he invigorated the electorate with political enthusiasm, and with a simple promise of hope.

Perhaps, Mr. McNeil, you intended an almost deflated compliment with your description of President Clinton's foreign policy as merely "effective." Referring to a President's foreign policies as "effective" is not unlike referring to a quarterback's superbowl performance as "satisfactory." If indeed you intended such a lukewarm appraisal of his foreign policy initiatives, then I concur with you. If on the other hand you intended a higher compliment than that which you issued, then I respectfully suggest to you that you are wrong.

President Clinton largely ignored the terrorist camps of Afghanistan: camps which would one day breed the savagery of Al Qaeda. His initially half-hearted commitments in Somalia yielded tragic losses. As North Korea increased its nuclear arsenal, he responded to its frightening actions with payoffs and not with might, setting the stage for the problems we now face. And tonight, as I write this, 20% of salaried Alcoa employees are questioning the prudence of "free trade."

Bush is certainly not the answer to these woes. The foreign policy legacy of President Clinton will not be characterized by the catastrophic damages caused by our current President. But to suggest that President Clinton is the "big dog" of foreign policy connotes a failure to fairly appraise what he did and did not do in that regard, while in office.

Of course, I say all of this, without mentioning the Lewinsky scandal which, in my estimation, exposed our great Democratic party to attacks in the form of hypocritical proclamations of "values" from the right. The profound stupidity of the Lewinsky scandal clearly demonstrated a lack of judgment which ultimately diminished the luster of his legacy and, in the process, weakened our party.

So you are the great Porter McNeil of which everyone here speaks? I have heard so many wonderful things about you, and I have enjoyed this opportunity to respond to your remarks. But with due respect, while you may choose to emulate President Clinton, I will reserve my emulation for a character far greater than that which your "big dog" embodies.

If you ask me, "Porter McNeil" sounds more like the name of a steak. In fact, I seem to recall that I once ordered the Porter McNeil, cooked medium well, at a local restaurant. Everyone told me, "You have to try the Porter McNeil! You have to try the Porter McNeil!" And so I did. It was pretty good overall, but for my taste, it needed a hell of a lot more time on the grill.

At 3/08/2005 10:19 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

I might point out that Bush Sr. was the president who sent troops to Somalia. Clinton had only beenin office perhaps a week or two when the famous attack took place.

I also recall how the right excoriated Clinton with incessant yowls of "wag the dog" when he actually DID try to take out bin Laden.

And it was the Clinton national security staff that advised incoming Bush staff that bin Laden would be and should be their number one priority.

The fact remains that Bush the lesser's administration did absolutely NOTHING to deal with this problem, with the obvious results. I mean, when you get an intelligence brief entitled "Bin Laden determined to strike within the U.S." and completely dismiss it, you ought to get a little blame.

At 3/08/2005 10:22 PM, Blogger Dissenter said...

A LITTLE blame? I'd say a LOT of blame. My last post was by no means intended to be an excuse for Bush's abhorrent failings. Rather, I merely suggest that Clinton's foreign policy was not without its own fair share of flaws.

At 3/08/2005 10:31 PM, Blogger Dissenter said...

I would add this evidence to my argument as to Somalia: Eighteen U.S. soldiers were killed and 75 wounded in Somalia on Oct. 3, 1993 -- eight-and-a half months into the first Clinton administration. While the first President Bush did send American troops to Somalia in December, 1992, as part of a humanitarian effort to end a catastrophic famine, it was Clinton who was in charge in August 1993, when American commanders in Mogadishu began calling for armored reinforcements -- Abrams tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles -- after four American soldiers were killed by a mine that detonated under their relatively flimsy vehicle. The armored vehicles never came. (Incidentally, does this sound familiar?) Clinton Defense Secretary Les Aspin, who personally turned down repeated requests for heavier armor, resigned by the end of 1993 largely because of the debacle.

At 3/08/2005 10:34 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Point taken. I didn't mean to leave the impression you were favorably comparing little Smirk's foreign policy trainwreck with Clinton's record.

But I've heard the right making false statements ad nauseum about Clinton's supposed failures. Just wanted to put the record straight.

At 3/08/2005 10:46 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

(looks like we cross-posted... I intended my comment above to be a reply to .. well, you know.)

Thanks for the details. I was working from memory, and I seemed to recall that it really wasn't Clinton's people who dropped the ball. I stand corrected. (and no, you Dope sleuths, that doesn't mean I wear orthopedic shoes.)

At 3/08/2005 10:50 PM, Anonymous King of Beers said...

With all due respect, "Dissenter," I have to take issue with your dissertation on Bill Clinton.

Although you made some valid points in your assessment of the administration of Bill Clinton, what I gathered from Mr. McNeil's "get-well" wishes for the President was something far different. I read a blog that said he is a "big political dog" due to his political abilities (winning two terms). Not to mention, he scored some major domestic victories (job growth, deficit elimination, budget surplus, crime reduced).

Mr. McNeil talked about Clinton being a "big dog" in his political world. The only Democrat to win two terms in office since Roosevelt earns that title. I'll go with McNeil and millions of other Dems who give Bill a thumbs up.

I'd suggest you stop "grilling" the "Porter McNeil steak," as you put it, and start grilling the Bush-Cheney administration a bit more. Let's talk about the issues, not the bloggers.

At 3/09/2005 12:39 AM, Anonymous The War Room said...

Go to

You can read about how the Democrats are tearing each other apart. It's very discouraging. Remember, Colorado is the state where Dems had real success and elected moderate Ken Salazar to the U.S. Senate. Now, apparently, an activist group of environmentalists have tossed out the state dem party chair as retaliation for supporting Salazar!
It's Democratic Party cannabalism at its worst.

And, Dope, you should direct your readers to this excellent site as it provides the moderate Democrat perspective (DLC, etc.).

At 3/09/2005 12:47 AM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

It's added to the blogroll in the right sidebar.

At 3/09/2005 9:36 PM, Blogger Dissenter said...

I do not find "king of beers'" defense of porter mcneil's statements to be unfair. And while I do not believe it to be proper to raise controversy for controversy's sake, I enjoy this site so much, in part, because we are allowed, albeit encouraged, to scrutinize the political thoughts of others. As to the "porter mcneil steak" comment, absolutely no maliciousness was intended. Rather, I found it to be amusing. Then again, I often find myself to be more amusing than others find me to be.

At 3/09/2005 11:06 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

Being a confirmed carnivore, The Dope found nothing offensive in describing someone as any sort of steak. Homer Simpson-like, at the mention of any succulent cut of beef, I kind of zone out and start slobbering. So I probably missed any subtle inferences.

Some people might go to Amazing or something to satisfy their fantasies, I go to


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